Faith Gaillot considered a journalism career, but took a commercial art course simply by chance her senior year of high school. As the course ended, she made a promise to her enthusiastic teacher to pursue her art. She went on to take art classes in college and was fascinated by the emotional possibilities in pen and ink drawings.
Realism has always been important to Gaillot. Classicists like Michelangelo and DaVinci, who were attracted to religious subjects, are particular favorites. Perhaps that’s why Southern Maryland’s churches hold a special fascination. She noticed that much of the art displayed in local galleries features subjects like water scenes and old barns, so she decided to work on something different — something she was inspired to draw. She recounts that a collector once said to her, “Your drawing of the church just speaks to me. You give it a soul, a heart.” Gaillot elaborates, “People seem especially attracted to these.” She has made a point of including these highly detailed church drawings in her shows.
Gaillot describes her process. “I do a basic outline, then freehand draw in pen and ink. I find that it’s the most challenging medium and demands that I stay focused. What makes it beautiful to me is the intense detail. You can’t camouflage mistakes easily. I use only one pen, and I have made it work for me… maybe I have finally conquered it. The rewards are great!”